Startup Program

Program benefits...

  • Start earning an income while on the program and get experience dealing with real customers.
  • tap into our 30+ years experience in Small Business marketing and franchise operations to create your own business
  • Referrals to local business network potential customers, plus mentors looking to help people succeed in business
  • Online learning platform with webinars, tips, tools, and techniques developed for use in business and marketing qualifications
  • Formal skills recognition badges to promote your expertise skills areas, verifiable online by potential customers, clients, or employers 
The steps to starting a business and earning extra income

Skill Badge Areas

The industrial era gave rise to ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ skills. Now society has moved on, a 3rd skill set has emerged.

Technical, or “hard” skills are the skills used by action-takers. In a post-industrial HR era, they have been redefined as ‘action skills‘ in business.

Interpersonal, AKA soft skills, require you to think of others before making decisions in business. So it makes sense for these to be called ‘thinking skills‘.

Individuals use Initiative and Drive, Lifelong Learning, Cultural Awareness, Ethics, and Empathy, to make things happen. Now known as ‘personal skills‘.

Based on international research, the 3 core skills areas are being incorporated into Vocational and University qualifications and “micro-credentials”. But you can get ahead of the curve by doing real-world skills development today.

Click on the skills below to find our more about the future skills for work you can start developing right now and learn how to use them to future proof your income. 

Thinking skills

Critical thinking

Prioritises complex interests; Presents sound logic and reasons; uses basic techniques to improve insights and results; Works with others to challenge current thinking.


Identifies and adapts ideas; Analytical and lateral thinking; Systematic process to identify possible solutions, often in collaboration with others.


Planning and organising own workload, considering work of others; Organises and prioritises work and personal commitments; Establishing boundaries when negotiating workloads.


Takes responsibility of routine decisions related directly to own role, Is beginning to take the initiative in non-routine situations, Contributes to group/team decision-making.

Personal Skills


Automatically implements standard procedures, uses a formal decision-making process with support, setting or clarifying goals, gathering information, and identifying and evaluating several choices against a limited set of criteria.


Recognises the value of continuous improvement; Contributes to the design of new approaches; Recognises the value of seeking different perspectives; Adopts proposals and finds ways to make them work without radical change.

Cultural Awareness

Uses familiar digital systems and tools to access, organise, analyse and display information; Accesses and filters information using search engines, data bases, or spreadsheets; Uses computer-based applications to present information.


Selects or supports new ideas to improve an aspect without radical change; May use a standard set of questions or criteria when deciding which ideas to adopt to fit immediate needs; Can it be adapted easily, Is it affordable?


Plans a range of tasks; Applies formal processes when planning more complex/unfamiliar tasks, producing plans reflecting awareness of time and resource constraints; making slight adjustments if necessary; Assesses effectiveness in terms of how well stated goals were achieved.

Action Skills

Digital Technologies

Understands the purposes, and key features of common digital systems and tools, adapting some functions to improve personal efficiency; general design and new technologies with similar purposes; Troubleshoots issues and knows when to ask others for assistance.


Maintains online connections with others using a variety of digital tools to interact, collaborate and create; Use online forums, blogs and social networking sites to connect and discuss work related issues, following online etiquette.


Uses procedures when responding to familiar problems; Applies formal problem-solving processes breaking complex issues into manageable; Seeks feedback or advice; Considers the effectiveness of a solution when it does not achieve intended outcomes.

Problem Solving

Understands the importance of secure information and privacy, take personal responsibility for identifying and managing risk factors; Recognises issues about the transparency and accessibility of information; identifies benefits and drawbacks, takes steps to manage risks.

Customer Focus

Evaluates effectiveness of decisions and solution in terms of how well it met stated goals; Seeks to improve a future response; Reflect on the effectiveness of a selected problem solving process.

Skill Levels


Practical real-world experience to identify patterns and establish priorities. Comfortably applies the ‘rules’, systematic approach in unfamiliar situations.


Considerable practical experience to assess, and respond to situations in an increasingly intuitive and flexible way. seeks guidance when making important decisions.


Extensive practical experience, big picture understanding and an eye for relevant detail. Refines patterns, concepts and principles, deciding which principles are applicable.